Common Bur Flower or Kadamb (Anthocephalus Cadamba/कदंब) is a large, evergreen tree with beautiful & unique flowers. It is a fast growing tree with a broad crown and is even planted sacredly near temples.
The flower of the tree is red to orange in colour, occurring in dense, globe-like head. It nicely assumes the shape of a ball. When the tree is in bloom, one can see the tree loaded with numerous beautiful flowers. The flowering usually begins when the tree is 4–5 years old.
In Hindu mythology, the tree was the favourite tree of Lord Krishna, who is usually depicted playing his flute under it. He also used to plays with his friends under the Kadamb tree using the unique globular flower of the tree.
Hence the tree is also known as Haripriya , God’s favourite. The tree is highly regarded religiously and culturally in India, Java and Malaysia. Kadamb trees and flowers are also a universal favourite among the Gods. The Mother Goddess Durga resides in a Kadamb forest (Kadamba Vana Vāsinī).
This beautiful tree is also known for its medicinal virtues. The tree has astringent & antipyretic properties. It is believed to have cure for ulcers, digestive ailments, diarrhoea, expectorant, fever, vomiting etc.
A yellow dye is obtained from the root bark. Kadamb flowers are an important raw material in the production of attar, Indian perfume with Sandalwood (Santalum Album) base in which one of the essences is absorbed through hydro-distillation. The tree is grown along avenues, roadsides and villages for shade. The fresh leaves are sometimes used as serviettes or plates.
It is common belief among the natives of many villages in the state Chhattisgarh that plantation of Kadamb tree near to lakes and ponds, brings happiness and prosperity in their life. Well, the presence of this tree may bless them or it may not. But it’s absence will not be better than a curse, for sure..!